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Drug War Chronicle
(formerly The Week Online with DRCNet)

Archives, 1997-2006

"Raising Awareness of the Consequences of Drug Prohibition"

Phillip S. Smith, Editor
David Borden, Executive Director

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Issue #440 -- 6/16/06

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  1. EDITORIAL: REAL WORLD CONSEQUENCES
    One of the regularly repeating outrages in the drug war is that of innocent people terrorized, physically harmed or killed in drug raids gone bad. The court has decided this is okay -- which means we have to say it's not.
  2. FEATURE: DEATH TOLL CLIMBS AS FENTANYL-LACED HEROIN ODS SPREAD
    With 14 deaths being linked by Chicago authorities to heroin laced with fentanyl in a two-day period last week, the nationwide death toll in a wave of ODs tied to the powerful synthetic opiate continues to rise.
  3. FEATURE: AMONG WHITES, IMPRISONING DRUG USERS A MINORITY OPINION, SURVEY FINDS
    Most Americans favor treatment, not prison time, for drug users. Those who don't are more likely to make moral judgments about drug users, more likely to deny that racism is a problem in the US, and more likely to buy into misconceptions about who uses drugs.
  4. FEATURE: INDUSTRIAL HEMP PUSH UNDERWAY IN CALIFORNIA, NORTH DAKOTA
    Moves are afoot in California and North Dakota to win approval of industrial hemp production at the state level, but the ultimate goal is removing the federal government as an obstacle to domestic cultivation of the valuable and versatile plant.
  5. OFFER AND APPEAL: IMPORTANT NEW LEGALIZATION VIDEO AND DRUG WAR FACTS BOOK AVAILABLE
    Get your copy of the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition video that Walter Cronkite called a "must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with [the drug] issue."
  6. BOOK OFFER: BURNING RAINBOW FARM: HOW A STONER UTOPIA WENT UP IN SMOKE
    In fall 2001, activists Tom Crosslin and Rollie Rohm were gunned down by state and federal agents, after desperation drove them to set fire to the buildings on their beloved Rainbow Farm campground and concert site. A new book tells the heart-wrenching story.
  7. ALERT: IMPORTANT MEDICAL MARIJUANA VOTE COMING UP IN CONGRESS -- YOUR HELP NEEDED
    This July, the US House of Representatives will vote again on the Hinchey-Rohrabacher medical marijuana amendment, which if passed will forbid the US Dept. of Justice from interfering with state medical marijuana laws. It's crucial that more members of Congress vote for medical marijuana this year than did last year.
  8. FOLLOW-UP: COLOMBIA AMENDMENT RESULTS
    Special thanks to the more than 1,000 DRCNet subscribers who lobbied Congress to reduce aerial fumigation funding. We lost, but the numbers are getting close.
  9. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  10. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    Three bad apples from North Carolina, a former Minnesota cop dealing powder, a Connecticut cop passing out favors, another Border Patrol officer goes down, and so does yet another prison guard.
  11. SEARCH AND SEIZURE: SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS SEARCHES WITHOUT NOTICE
    In a ruling overturning decades of precedent and centuries of common law tradition, the US Supreme Court has allowed police with a search warrant to enter homes and seize evidence without knocking.
  12. METHAMPHETAMINE: EPIDEMIC? WHAT EPIDEMIC? STUDY ASKS
    The extent of methamphetamine use in the United States is overplayed and exaggerated by the news media and politicians, the widely-respected think tank The Sentencing Project said in a study released this week.
  13. LAW ENFORCEMENT: JUSTICE FOR SALE IN WASHINGTON BORDER COUNTY
    If you've got cash, you can "buy down" the charges against you and walk away from a serious drug bust in Whatcom County, Washington. If you don't have the cash, too bad for you, the hammer will fall.
  14. EUROPE: NEW ITALIAN GOVERNMENT TO MOVE TO "REDUCE DAMAGE" OF TOUGH DRUG LAW
    As one of its last legacies, the rightist government of former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi passed a tough new drug law treating people in possession of more than five grams of marijuana or similarly small amounts of other drugs as if they were dealers. The new government is moving to scale it back.
  15. EUROPE: BRITAIN TO RECLASSIFY METHAMPHETAMINE AS CLASS A DRUG
    A move to lump meth together with heroin and cocaine would bump sentences up to seven years for possession and life for dealing in Great Britain.
  16. CANADA: FEDERAL MEDICAL MARIJUANA PROGRAM A FLOP, AIDS SOCIETY SAYS
    The Canadian government's medical marijuana program is not working, the Canadian AIDS Society said in a report released Wednesday.
  17. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  18. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #439 -- 6/9/06

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  1. FEATURE: ACLU FILES SUIT TO BLOCK ALASKA MARIJUANA RECRIMINALIZATION, STATE SAYS IT WILL WAIT ON LITIGATION'S RESULTS
    Last week, it was legal for Alaskans to possess up to a quarter-pound of marijuana in the privacy of their homes. This week, after Gov. Frank Murkowski signed into law the bill he pushed recriminalizing the weed, it's not. Next week, who knows?
  2. FEATURE: TURNING THE CORNER IN BALTIMORE
    Statistics released Tuesday by city officials suggest that the city is beginning to turn the corner -- thanks in part to a sustained increase in drug treatment availability in the city and a public health approach aimed at taking full advantage of it.
  3. DRCNET BOOK REVIEW: "BURNING RAINBOW FARM: HOW A STONER UTOPIA WENT UP IN SMOKE," BY DEAN KUIPERS (2006, BLOOMSBURY PRESS, $24.95 HB)
    Rainbow Farm was a focal point of that rural Midwest subcultural sphere where marijuana activists mingled with militia men, factory workers and farmers partied with bikers and Rainbow Tribers, and everyone agreed that puritanical drug warriors and their laws could go to hell. But in the end, the stoner rebellion started by Tom Crosslin ended in death and ashes.
  4. BOOK OFFER: BURNING RAINBOW FARM: HOW A STONER UTOPIA WENT UP IN SMOKE
    In fall 2001, activists Tom Crosslin and Rollie Rohm were gunned down by state and federal agents, after desperation drove them to set fire to the buildings on their beloved Rainbow Farm campground and concert site. A new book tells the heart-wrenching story.
  5. ALERT: STILL TIME TO LOBBY CONGRESS ON COLOMBIA VOTE
    Fumigation harms Colombia's environment and people caught in its way, and eradication has never done more than move the growing from place to place. Your support is needed for a Congressional amendment to transfer funds away from it.
  6. ALERT: IMPORTANT MEDICAL MARIJUANA VOTE COMING UP IN CONGRESS -- YOUR HELP NEEDED
    This July, the US House of Representatives will vote again on the Hinchey-Rohrabacher medical marijuana amendment, which if passed will forbid the US Dept. of Justice from interfering with state medical marijuana laws. It's crucial that more members of Congress vote for medical marijuana this year than did last year.
  7. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  8. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    Even the corrupt cops seem to be going on summer break. This week, we have only three to report: A pot-dealing border guard, a drug-dealing prison guard, and a coke-dealing airman.
  9. EUROPE: BRITISH HOME OFFICE PROPOSES TOUGH PRESUMED DRUG DEALING THRESHOLDS
    The British Home Office has produced a draft document of regulations that would be a de facto reversal of the recent downgrading of marijuana possession to a ticketable offense. And people caught with more than a couple of grams of heroin or cocaine could get life.
  10. EUROPE: SWISS HARM REDUCTION POLICY FOR HEROIN RESULTS IN LESS PROBLEMATIC HEROIN USE
    Swiss researchers involved in 15 years of harm reduction approaches to heroin use have managed to reduce heroin use four-fold, according to results published in the Lancet.
  11. SENTENCING: US CONFERENCE OF MAYORS COMES OUT AGAINST MANDATORY MINIMUM DRUG SENTENCES
    The US Conference of Mayors, meeting at its annual convention in Las Vegas this week, passed a resolution opposing mandatory minimum sentences for drug crimes and called for "fair and effective" sentencing policies.
  12. METHAMPHETAMINE: NUMBER IN TREATMENT SKYROCKETS IN LAST DECADE, BUT MUCH OF INCREASE LINKED TO CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM
    The Center for Substance Abuse Research at the University of Maryland reported this week that methamphetamine treatment admissions increased nearly 10-fold between 1992 and 2003. But the increase in treatment is largely driven by referrals from the criminal justice system, where arrested methamphetamine users are given a choice between forced drug treatment and imprisonment.
  13. METHAMPHETAMINE: ILLINOIS GOVERNOR SIGNS METH BILLS, WILL INCREASE PENALTIES, CREATE METH MAKER REGISTRY
    People convicted of making methamphetamine in Illinois will soon join sex offenders as social pariahs so feared that the state will keep a registry of their names available to the public via the Internet.
  14. ELECTIONS: ALABAMA'S NALL TO CONTINUE WITH WRITE-IN CAMPAIGN AFTER FALLING SHORT ON SIGNATURE DRIVE
    Drug reformer Loretta Nall, the Libertarian Party nominee for Alabama governor, fell short in her effort to collect enough signatures to make the November ballot, but has vowed to continue to campaign as a write-in candidate.
  15. WEB SCAN
    Dueling Vigils for Lost Promise, Things About Drugs Top Ten List, Pain Articles in Reason and Medical Economics, Drug Czar's Meth Mispronouncement
  16. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  17. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #438 -- 6/2/06

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  1. EDITORIAL: WE SHOULD HAVE SUCH PROBLEMS
    Mayors on different sides of the Holland-Belgium border are disagreeing a bit when it comes to the cross-border "drug tourism" issue. We should have those kinds of problems here -- instead of the ones we have now.
  2. BOOK OFFER: BURNING RAINBOW FARM: HOW A STONER UTOPIA WENT UP IN SMOKE
    In fall 2001, activists Tom Crosslin and Rollie Rohm were gunned down by state and federal agents, after desperation drove them to set fire to the buildings on their beloved Rainbow Farm campground and concert site. A new book tells the heart-wrenching story.
  3. FEATURE: SALVIA UNDER SIEGE -- MOVEMENT TO BAN HERBAL HALLUCINOGEN GAINS MOMENTUM IN STATEHOUSES
    Salvia divinorum, a southern Mexican psychedelic plant, is currently sold in thousands of retail outlets in the United States as well as being easily available over the Internet. Soon it may become another black market product creating drug trade violence and letting the government send people to jail.
  4. FEATURE: SSDP, ACLU SEEK PERMANENT INJUNCTION IN HEA LAWSUIT, EDUCATION DEPARTMENT MOVES TO DISMISS
    A student group that filed suit seeking to declare the Higher Education Act's drug provision unconstitutional sought last Friday to win a preliminary injunction stopping its enforcement. The government fought back, with its own motion to dismiss the case.
  5. FEATURE: DRUG REFORMERS TAKE THE THIRD PARTY PATH IN BIDS FOR STATEWIDE OFFICE
    Frustrated by the two major parties' indifference -- if not downright hostility -- toward ending the decades-old war on drugs, at least three prominent drug reform leaders have launched bids for statewide office as third party candidates.
  6. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  7. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    A trio of meth-dealing cops get federal prison in two separate cases, a pot-slinging policeman gets state prison in Texas, another prison guard with a sideline has gone down, and another cop can't keep his hands out of the evidence room cookie jar.
  8. LAW ENFORCEMENT: FEDERAL DRUG PROSECUTIONS DECLINED FOR PAST FIVE YEARS
    The latest Justice Department data show that federal drug prosecutions have been declining for the past five years.
  9. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: SOUTH DAKOTA INITIATIVE MAKES THE NOVEMBER BALLOT
    South Dakota electoral officials Wednesday certified that a petition drive to place a medical marijuana initiative on the November ballot submitted enough signatures to qualify. If successful, the initiative would make South Dakota the 12th state to pass a medical marijuana law, and the first in the Midwest.
  10. HARM REDUCTION: ACLU WINS VICTORY IN CONNECTICUT NEEDLE EXCHANGE CASE
    A federal judge has ruled that protections she previously granted to people possessing needles should be expanded to include other injecting equipment as well.
  11. LATIN AMERICA: MEXICAN LEFTIST CANDIDATE CALLS FOR MORE ARMY IN DRUG WAR
    As Mexico's presidential elections draw nearer and the race tighter, left-leaning PRD candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador is trying to out-tough his opponent on the drug trade.
  12. LATIN AMERICA: US DRUG WAR ALLY REELECTED IN COLOMBIA, BUT LEFTIST LEGALIZATION ADVOCATE PLACES SECOND
    While Colombian President Alvaro Uribe cruised to an easy reelection victory with 62 percent of the vote last Sunday, a former Supreme Court justice whose ruling legalized drug possession in the country came in a surprisingly strong second.
  13. LATIN AMERICA: AS VENEZUELA AND BOLIVIA DRAW NEARER, CHAVEZ PONIES UP $1 MILLION FOR COCA FACTORIES, RESEARCH
    Two Latin American leaders the Bush administration strongly dislikes met in Bolivia last weekend, and coca came out ahead.
  14. EUROPE: DUTCH MAYOR TO MOVE COFFEE SHOPS TO BELGIAN BORDER
    Despite complaints from the Belgian government, a Dutch town is moving several of its marijuana "coffee shops" to the border to reduce "drug tourism."
  15. WEB SCAN
    New Change the Climate Online TV Ad, Journey for Justice Daily Journal, Psychedelics and Medicine, Convict Nation
  16. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  17. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #437 -- 5/26/06

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  1. EDITORIAL: MAKING SURE DRUGS KILL
    Often people object to drug legalization, at least for drugs other than marijuana, because, as they say, "drugs kill." But the phenomenon is often a self-fulfilling prophecy.
  2. FEATURE: NUMBER OF PEOPLE BEHIND BARS IN AMERICA INCREASING BY MORE THAN A THOUSAND A WEEK
    Despite half a decade of sentencing reform efforts, America's jail and prison population is increasing at a rate of more than a thousand per week.
  3. FEATURE: FENTANYL DEATH TOLL MOUNTS AS AUTHORITIES BELATEDLY ACT
    A wave of fatal drug overdoses from the highly-potent masquerading as heroin that has killed dozens of people in recent weeks struck Detroit with a vengeance over the weekend. Harm reductionists are asking why authorities took so long to react to the public health emergency.
  4. DRCNET REVIEW ESSAY: DRUG POLICY AND PROHIBITION IN CONTEXT
    Chronicle editor Phil Smith reviews "Decade of Nightmares: The End of the Sixties and the Making of Eighties America" and "The Devil's Picnic: Around the World in Search of Forbidden Fruit."
  5. OFFER AND APPEAL: IMPORTANT NEW LEGALIZATION VIDEO AND DRUG WAR FACTS BOOK AVAILABLE
    Get your copy of the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition video that Walter Cronkite called a "must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with [the drug] issue."
  6. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  7. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    Two stories from New York City, a cop peddling "cocaine cookies" in Alabama, a Delaware State Trooper with a drug problem, and a very, very ugly recording are on tap this week.
  8. HEMP: NO FARM ON THE PINE RIDGE, SAYS FEDERAL APPEALS COURT
    A federal appeals court May 17 rejected a bid by South Dakota Oglala Sioux Tribe member Alex White Plume to grow industrial hemp crops on his land on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.
  9. SEARCH AND SEIZURE: HOUSE BILL AIMING TO LOWER STANDARDS FOR STUDENT SEARCHES INTRODUCED
    A bill whose sole purpose is to lower the threshold for allowing schools to search students' lockers and bags for drugs and other contraband has been introduced in the US House of Representatives.
  10. LATIN AMERICA: COLOMBIAN SOLDIERS ACCIDENTALLY KILL TEN COLOMBIAN NARCS
    Colombian soldiers operating near the town of Jamundi in the Valle region shot and killed ten undercover anti-drug police and their civilian informant in a case of mistaken identity, Colombian officials reported Monday.
  11. LATIN AMERICA: BOLIVIAN PRESIDENT WINS VOLUNTARY LIMITS ON COCA PRODUCTION
    Bolivian President Evo Morales, himself a former coca growers' leader, announced last weekend he had won an agreement with peasants in the Yungas region to voluntarily limit their coca growing. The move came as part of an emerging two-pronged strategy by Morales to deal with the coca issue.
  12. EUROPE: BRITISH REPORT CALLS FOR SAFE INJECTION SITES -- HOME OFFICE TO CONSIDER
    An independent working group sponsored by the influential Joseph Rowntree Foundation has called for Britain to open safe injection sites for hard drug users on a trial basis.
  13. MARIJUANA: SMOKING IT DOESN'T CAUSE LUNG CANCER, STUDY FINDS
    A study at UCLA by a team led by one of the most prominent marijuana researchers has found no link between marijuana smoking and lung cancer.
  14. LAW ENFORCEMENT: DRUG TRUTH NETWORK AWARDS FIRST TIN FOIL HAT AWARD TO DEA'S TANDY
    The Drug Truth Network has unveiled its new Tin Foil Hat Award (an image commonly associated with whacked-out conspiracy theorists), and selected its first prize-winner -- Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) head Karen Tandy.
  15. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  16. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #436 -- 5/19/06

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  1. EDITORIAL: BORDER FEARS
    The president says that sending 6,000 National Guardsmen to the border won't militarize it. But militarization can work in subtle ways, and the pull to use that many troops once they're there may be irresistible.
  2. FEATURE: DRAMATIC DEATH TOLL IN SAO PAULO AS DRUG GANGS, POLICE CLASH
    More than 160 people, including at least 75 police and prison guards, have been killed in a series of prison uprisings and urban attacks led by drug trafficking organizations in South America's largest city.
  3. FEATURE: NEW JERSEY MEDICAL MARIJUANA BILL TO GET HEARING
    Efforts to pass a medical marijuana bill in the Garden State are moving at a glacial pace, but they are moving.
  4. FEATURE: MARIJUANA REFORM EMERGES IN IRELAND
    Ireland is a country that is famous for drinking, but like everywhere else in the world, Cannabis Nation has a toehold in the Emerald Isle.
  5. DRCNET BOOK REVIEW: "BETWEEN TWO PAGES: CHILDREN OF SUBSTANCE," BY SUSAN HUBENTHAL AND GRIEFNET PARENTS (2003, 1ST BOOKS, $22.95, pb.)
    For a parent, losing a child is one of the greatest and most bitter sorrows imaginable. Losing a child to a drug overdose or some other form of drug-related death is even worse. "Between Two Pages" tells the stories of some of those lost offspring and the suffering parents they left behind.
  6. OFFER AND APPEAL: IMPORTANT NEW LEGALIZATION VIDEO AND DRUG WAR FACTS BOOK AVAILABLE
    Get your copy of the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition video that Walter Cronkite called a "must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with [the drug] issue."
  7. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  8. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    A missing evidence investigation in Delaware and a missing evidence sentence in California; more sticky-fingered cops in Tennessee; a would-be porn king with a bad temper in Denver, and some perverse traffic cops in Baltimore.
  9. SEARCH AND SEIZURE: BUSH NOMINEES COULD PROVIDE SWING VOTES IN SUPREME COURT SEARCH WARRANT CASE
    In an unusual second oral argument before the US Supreme Court Thursday, justices sparred over a Michigan case that tests previous rulings generally requiring police to knock and announce themselves before entering a residence with a search warrant.
  10. EUROPE: BRITISH POLICE DEMAND BAR PATRONS SUBMIT TO DRUG TESTS
    Police in Sussex are broadening a program that requires people wishing to enter pubs to submit to random, on-the-spot drug tests -- and warning they'll detain people who refuse to take them.
  11. SOUTHWEST ASIA: US COUNTER-DRUG CONTRACTOR KILLED AS AFGHAN FIGHTING INTENSIFIES
    An American civilian anti-drug contractor was killed and two other Americans wounded in a suicide bombing in western Afghanistan Thursday.
  12. AUSTRALIA: LONE SOUTH AUSTRALIA DEMOCRAT MP EVEN LONELIER -- BUT UNBOWED -- AFTER COMING TO ECSTASY'S DEFENSE
    Member of Parliament Sandra Kanck is her party leader and only MP in the state legislature, but the party is moving to dump her after she stood up in parliament to say that Ecstasy "is not a dangerous drug" and could have been used to ease the trauma of victims of last year's killer bushfires.
  13. AUSTRALIA: HEALTH MINISTER SAYS MARIJUANA AS DANGEROUS AS HEROIN -- CALLS FOR NATIONAL TOUGHENING OF LAWS
    Australian Parliamentary Secretary for Health Christopher Pyne announced Monday that all state and territorial governments had signed on to a federal plan to create a tough, uniform set of marijuana laws as part of a crackdown on cannabis. In making the announcement, Pyne also made the bizarre claim that marijuana is "as dangerous" as hard drugs like heroin or cocaine.
  14. WEB SCAN
    Shipping Off Hawaiian Women Prisoners, Two Very Different District Attorneys, Drug Truth Network
  15. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  16. JOB OPPORTUNITIES
    Syringe Exchange Program Coordinator and Specialist, Harm Reduction Coalition, Oakland, California
  17. JOB OPPORTUNITY
    Program Manager, Criminal Justice Policy Foundation, Washington, DC
  18. JOB OPPORTUNITY
    Program Coordinator, Sensible Colorado, Denver/Boulder
  19. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #435 -- 5/12/06

Drug War Chronicle, recent top items

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  1. EDITORIAL: ANOTHER SPECTACLE OF UNREASON IN THE DRUG WAR
    Drug warriors have made spectacles of themselves two times during the last two weeks. They should be careful -- we might start making some spectacles ourselves.
  2. FEATURE: DEA MONTREAL CONFAB GREETED BY COUNTER-CONFERENCE
    An ad hoc coalition of Canadian and US drug reform groups greeted the US Drug Enforcement Administration and its law enforcement buddies from across the hemisphere in Montreal this week.
  3. FEATURE: "2020 GROUP" BEGINS BUILDING AN INTERNATIONAL DRUG REFORM MOVEMENT
    As the International Harm Reduction Association annual conference in Vancouver wound down last weekend, leading drug reformers from Canada, the US, Australia, and Europe met in a downtown meeting hall to lay the groundwork for an international movement to end the drug war by 2020.
  4. FEATURE: MARIJUANA ACTIVISTS TAKE TO STREETS FOR ANNUAL GLOBAL MARIJUANA MARCH
    Events in the US were peaceful and small-scale during this year's coordinated marijuana rallies. But some cities in other countries saw large crowds and others suffered police repression. One news agency temporarily reported a march as being anti-marijuana.
  5. OFFER AND APPEAL: IMPORTANT NEW LEGALIZATION VIDEO AND DRUG WAR FACTS BOOK AVAILABLE
    Get your copy of the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition video that Walter Cronkite called a "must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with [the drug] issue."
  6. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  7. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    Police officers in Baltimore, Memphis and Florida are hit this week for marijuana and cocaine distribution, robbing drug dealers and extorting sex during drug busts.
  8. POLITICS: ALBANY DA IGNITES FIRESTORM BY CALLING DRUG WAR "LUCRATIVE"
    Albany District Attorney David Soares ignited a firestorm of criticism over remarks he made at last week's International Harm Reduction Association conference in Vancouver. But given the response, it may be his critics who are feeling like they got their fingers burned.
  9. SENTENCING: NEW YORK ASSEMBLY PASSES ROCKEFELLER LAW REFORM BILL
    A bill passed by New York state's assembly and headed to the Senate would extend 2004's limited reforms to more Rockefeller drug law prisoners.
  10. MARIJUANA: IN REVERSAL, ALASKA HOUSE PASSES RECRIMINALIZATION BILL
    In a surprise vote last Friday, the Alaska House approved a bill that would recriminalize marijuana possession in the state. But an injunctive challenge to the law based on the state's constitution and court rulings is coming on fast.
  11. SOUTH ASIA: INDIA SUPREME COURT SAYS TIME TO PROHIBIT ALCOHOL
    India's Supreme Court has called on the federal and state governments to prohibit alcohol, citing an article of the nation's constitution. The Times of India wasn't impressed.
  12. SOUTHWEST ASIA: AFGHAN ERADICATION CAMPAIGN TAKES DEADLY TURN
    The Afghan government's effort to eradicate opium poppies provoked deadly violence Tuesday as angry farmers clashed with anti-drug agents trying to chop down poppy fields.
  13. WEB SCAN
    Buffalo Legalization Talk -- Twice, Flash Animation on Two Years for One Joint, Cannabinoid Chronicles, U-Mass v. DEA, World Prison Populations
  14. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  15. JOB OPPORTUNITY
    Office Administrator/Book-keeper, MPP, Washington
  16. PART-TIME JOB OPPORTUNITY
    Cannabis Action Network, Berkeley, California
  17. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #434 -- 5/5/06

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  1. EDITORIAL: OH, MEXICO (OH, THE EMBARRASSMENT)
    US officials have now embarrassed us with both our immediate neighbors by interfering in their internal drug policies.
  2. FEATURE: MEXICO MOVES TO DECRIMINALIZE DRUG POSSESSION -- NO, WAIT, NEVERMIND
    For a few days this week, it looked like Mexico was going to decriminalize drug possession, but that ended Wednesday when President Fox rejected the bill under US pressure.
  3. FEATURE: HARM REDUCTIONISTS GATHER IN VANCOUVER
    Vancouver's well-deserved reputation for cutting edge drug law reform and harm reduction projects made it a natural fit for this week's 17th Annual International Harm Reduction Conference, attended by more than a thousand people from 93 countries.
  4. FEATURE: BUILDING AN INTERNATIONAL DRUG USERS' MOVEMENT -- ACTIVISTS FORM COALITION, ISSUE DECLARATION
    More than 100 activists representing at least 13 different drug user groups from around the globe met in Vancouver this week to form an international coalition.
  5. OFFER: IMPORTANT NEW LEGALIZATION VIDEO AVAILABLE
    Get your copy of the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition video that Walter Cronkite called a "must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with [the drug] issue."
  6. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  7. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    More soldiers cop pleas in a border smuggling sting, family ties bring down a records clerk and a former detective, and yet another prison guard gets busted for his entrepreneurial efforts.
  8. THE MOVEMENT: ANNUAL DEA EVENT GENERATES COUNTER-CONFERENCE NEXT WEEK IN MONTREAL
    The DEA-sponsored annual hemispheric drug enforcement conference is meeting in Canada for the first time next week -- and also for the first time is encountering organized opposition.
  9. CELEBRITY BUST: TOKEN ARREST AS RADIO TALKER RUSH LIMBAUGH CUTS A DEAL ON PAIN PILL CHARGES
    Rush Limbaugh can talk the talk about the drug war. But when it comes to taking a fall for his own drug-related misdeeds, he can't walk the walk.
  10. THE GOVERNMENT: DRUG CZAR UNDER ATTACK FROM RIGHT, LEFT
    Republican and Democratic senators have called for drug czar John Walters to be fired because of his focus on marijuana instead of methamphetamine.
  11. MARIJUANA: UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO POSTS PICS OF STUDENTS AT POT RALLY, OFFERS REWARD FOR NAMING THEM
    Following a "4/20" marijuana rally at the University of Colorado-Boulder last month, CU police have posted photos of more than 150 attendees and are offering rewards to those helping identify them.
  12. MILITARY MATTERS: ANGRY WEST POINT CADETS "RIOT" AFTER DRUG SEARCH
    Cadets at the US Military Academy at West Point, New York, went on a rampage last week in response to an unannounced drug dog search of their quarters.
  13. EUROPE: SCOTTISH FIRST MINISTER SLAMS POLICE FOR DRUG LEGALIZATION SUGGESTION
    Three weeks ago, Scotland's largest police union called for the legalization of all drugs. At their conference last week a government official blasted the idea.
  14. EUROPE: GERMANY PLANS TO PROVIDE FREE HEROIN TO LONG-TERM ADDICTS
    A pilot program to see if heroin maintenance programs could reduce criminality, overdose and disease among hard-core addicts was successful, according to German officials. Now they are planning to expand it.
  15. WEB SCAN
    CounterPunch on Suppression of Marijuana Research, Gay City News on FDA and Medical Marijuana
  16. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  17. JOB OPPORTUNITY
    Program Manager, Criminal Justice Policy Foundation, Washington, DC
  18. SUMMER INTERNSHIP
    Americans for Safe Access, Oakland, CA
  19. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #433 -- 4/28/06

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  1. FEATURE: A PERFECT STORM ON THE US-MEXICAN BORDER AS DRUG AND IMMIGRATION AND TERROR WARS CONVERGE
    This week, the US Senate voted to divert nearly $2 billion dollars from the Iraq war effort and instead use the money to increase enforcement on the border. But whether that stops or slows illegal immigration, it certainly won't stop drugs.
  2. FEATURE: DPA "CITY STRATEGY" TAKES AIM AT DRUG WAR IN THE NATION'S CAPITAL
    With open air drug markets, a prohibition-related "crack war" that raged murderously through the 1980s and 1990s, and high levels of heroin and crack use -- and with large numbers of young black men behind bars on drug charges -- DC is an apt target for a concentrated drug reform effort. Now it's going to get one.
  3. FEATURE: NORML MARIJUANA REFORM CONFERENCE WRAPS UP
    The annual conference of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws ended in San Francisco Saturday afternoon, wrapping up three days of intensive panel discussions, vendor hawking, and hallway networking among the more than 500 people who showed up for the annual confab.
  4. OFFER: IMPORTANT NEW LEGALIZATION VIDEO AVAILABLE
    Get your copy of the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition video that Walter Cronkite called a "must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with [the drug] issue."
  5. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  6. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    An Oregon city pays -- again -- for the actions of a criminal cop, a border crime family's ties reach into law enforcement, another border drug cop goes bad, and a crooked deputy in a crooked Tennessee county heads for the federal slammer.
  7. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: BIPARTISAN HOUSE COALITION CHALLENGES FDA MEDICAL MARIJUANA FINDING
    A week after the FDA issued a one-page opinion claiming marijuana has no proven medical uses, a bipartisan group of 24 House members led by Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) has called on the agency to explain its reasoning and offer scientific proof for its position.
  8. LEGALIZATION: BUFFALO POLITICIAN IGNITES FIRESTORM BY USING "L-WORD"
    In comments that continue to reverberate through upstate New York, Erie County Chief Executive Joel Giambra called last week for a serious discussion of legalizing drugs.
  9. HARM ENHANCEMENT: ADULTERATED BATCHES OF HEROIN KILLING USERS IN CHICAGO, ON EAST COAST
    One of the perils of prohibition is playing out among heroin users in Chicago and on the East Coast, especially Philadelphia, and it is the users who are paying the price.
  10. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: ED ROSENTHAL'S FEDERAL CULTIVATION CONVICTIONS OVERTURNED
    A three-judge panel of the US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has thrown out the January 2003 conviction of "Guru of Ganja" Ed Rosenthal, finding the verdict was tainted by a juror's phone call to an attorney friend.
  11. SOUTHEAST ASIA: MALAYSIA BANS MARIJUANA MAGAZINES
    Citing a threat to national security and morality, the government of Malaysia has banned the venerable "High Times" magazine and two of its younger competitors.
  12. CANADA: VANCOUVER MAYOR WANTS DRUG MAINTENANCE PROGRAM
    In a wide-ranging interview with the Vancouver Sun last Friday, Vancouver Mayor Sam Sullivan said he wants to begin a program to provide drugs for addicts in the city's Downtown Eastside -- and he's willing to risk his political career to do so.
  13. WEB SCAN
    Slate, Scientific American, The Economist and Rush Limbaugh on Medical Marijuana and the FDA, In These Times Book Reviews
  14. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  15. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #432 -- 4/21/06

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  1. FEATURE: IN COLOMBIA, THE MORE THEY SPRAY, THE MORE THEY GROW
    Despite $5 billion spent by the Clinton and Bush administrations trying to wipe out Colombia's coca crop, cultivation is more widespread now than when the effort first started.
  2. FEATURE: IF IT'S 4/20, IT MUST BE NORML: ANNUAL CONFERENCE GETS UNDERWAY IN SAN FRANCISCO
    The Holiday Inn Golden Gate on Van Ness Avenue in the heart of San Francisco looked a bit looser than usual Wednesday afternoon, as some 500 marijuana activists and aficionados began gathering for the annual conference of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.
  3. FEATURE: MILLION MARIJUANA MARCHES LOOM, AS DO PERENNIAL QUESTIONS ABOUT THEIR UTILITY
    Advocates of marijuana legalization are again preparing to march in cities around the world on the first weekend in May. Their theme this year: Free Marc Emery!
  4. OFFER: IMPORTANT NEW LEGALIZATION VIDEO AVAILABLE
    Get your copy of the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition video that Walter Cronkite called a "must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with [the drug] issue."
  5. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  6. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    More cops as robbers, another cop with an evidence room problem, a cop running interference for a drug gang, and an FBI Special Agent in Charge who hung out with the wrong folks and lied about it.
  7. MARIJUANA: ALASKA HOUSE REJECTS RECRIMINALIZATION BILL
    A bill pushed aggressively by Gov. Frank Murkowski that would challenge a 1975 state supreme court decision legalizing marijuana possession was rejected by the state legislature on Wednesday.
  8. MARIJUANA: UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND STUDENTS VOTE TO EQUALIZE MARIJUANA, ALCOHOL PENALTIES
    In a symbolic action, students at the University of Maryland became the latest to approve referenda to equalize campus penalties for marijuana and alcohol.
  9. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: FDA REJECTING MARIJUANA AS MEDICINE DRAWS SCIENTIFIC CRITICISM
    In direct contradiction to the federally-commissioned 1999 Institute of Medicine report, the FDA Thursday issued a statement claiming that "no sound scientific studies" support the medical use of marijuana.
  10. PSYCHEDELICS: LEADING MEDICAL JOURNAL CALLS FOR MORE LSD IN RESEARCH LABS
    A leading British medical journal, the Lancet, has called on researchers studying the brain and conditions like depression to experiment with psychedelics.
  11. AFRICA: MOZAMBIQUE OFFICIAL REJECTS CALLS TO DESTROY FARMERS' MARIJUANA CROPS
    Mozambique's attorney general last week told members of parliament that burning down poor farmers' "soruma" fields was not a solution, calling instead for assistance to help them grow alternative crops.
  12. CARIBBEAN: BERMUDA DRUG CHIEF LEANS TOWARD DOWNGRADING MARIJUANA OFFENSES
    Bermuda's national drug control minister is calling for Bermuda to follow Britain's example and treat marijuana as less serious than drugs like heroin or cocaine.
  13. ERRATA
    Drugged Driving
  14. DRUGGED DRIVING: THE STATE OF THE RESEARCH
    With the Office of National Drug Control Policy pushing states across the country to adopt zero-tolerance Driving Under the Influence of Drugs laws, research on the effect of marijuana on driving has been a growth industry in recent years.
  15. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #431 -- 4/14/06

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  1. FEATURE: ACLU SEEKS DISMISSAL OF "OPERATION METH MERCHANT" CASES FOR RACIAL BIAS
    A series of controversial prosecutions from busts of South-Asian convenience stores in Georgia have come under fire.
  2. FEATURE: MARCHERS TAKE TO THE STREETS TO DEMAND LEGAL NEEDLE EXCHANGES IN NORTH CAROLINA
    Bills to allow for legal needle exchange programs in North Carolina have languished since 1997, but this year the push is on to get one through the legislature.
  3. GUEST EDITORIAL: INJUSTICE IN MASSACHUSETTS -- TWO YEARS IN JAIL FOR ONE JOINT
    Anthony Papa of "15 Years to Life" criticizes the Bay State's draconian "school zone" law.
  4. OFFER: IMPORTANT NEW LEGALIZATION VIDEO AVAILABLE
    Get your copy of the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition video that Walter Cronkite called a "must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with [the drug] issue."
  5. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  6. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    A busy week: A pair of big city narcs and a small-town drug task force commander go down hard, an FBI secretary is accused of aiding meth dealers, a cop in Florida grows pot and one in Indiana slings crack, evidence walks out of two small-town departments, another prison guard goes down and so does an associate warden.
  7. MARIJUANA: ALASKA GOVERNOR'S EFFORT TO RECRIMINALIZE MARIJUANA PASSES ONE MORE HURDLE
    Alaska is the only state in the union where it is legal to possess marijuana -- up to a quarter-pound in the privacy of one's home -- and that is driving Gov. Frank Murkowski crazy.
  8. LAW ENFORCEMENT: IN WIDELY CRITICIZED STING, UNDERCOVER BLONDE COP SNARES MASSACHUSETTS HIGH SCHOOL BOYS
    In a sting drawing widespread condemnation even from law enforcement and educators, police in Falmouth, Massachusetts, sent a young, blonde, female cop into the high school undercover with a sob story about a dead mother, an absent father, and a need to get high to ease the pain. Friday police arrested nine teenage boys for selling her small quantities of marijuana and ecstasy.
  9. TREATMENT NOT JAIL: CALIFORNIA SAVING HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS THANKS TO PROPOSITION 36, REPORTS SAY
    The six-year-old California program that mandates treatment instead of prison for drug offenders is saving taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars while dramatically decreasing the number of drug offenders in prison in the state, according to new studies from the Justice Policy Institute and UCLA.
  10. EUROPE: SCOTTISH COPS SAY LEGALIZE IT ALL
    Scotland's Strathclyde Police Federation, the county's largest police union representing some 7,700 Scottish police officers, is calling for the legalization of all drugs.
  11. LAW ENFORCEMENT: AGENT WHO SHOT HIMSELF IN FOOT SUES DEA FOR MAKING HIM LOOK SILLY
    A DEA agent whose videotaped, self-inflicted gunshot wound before a class full of school children has become the stuff of Internet legend is suing the agency for releasing the tape.
  12. MARIJUANA: NEVADA INITIATIVE FACES UPHILL BATTLE, POLL SAYS
    The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported Tuesday that an initiative that would allow adult Nevadans to possess up to an ounce of marijuana without fear of criminal penalty is not finding strong voter support. But the group backing the initiative said its own polls tell a different story.
  13. DRUGGED DRIVING: BRITISH STUDY FINDS ONE-THIRD OF DRIVERS WHO TEST POSITIVE FOR DRUGS PASS ROADSIDE IMPAIRMENT TESTS
    A study released by the British Department for Transportation found that one-third of drivers who tested positive for illegal drugs drove well enough to pass roadside impairment tests.
  14. ASSET FORFEITURE: FEDS TRY TO SEIZE DRUG SUSPECTS' DENTAL WORK
    Stories of drug fighters seizing cars, homes, cash, and other assets from drug defendants are nothing new, but in Tacoma, Washington, federal prosecutors tried to seize the -- expensive, fancy dental work -- literally out of the mouths of two alleged drug dealers.
  15. LATIN AMERICA: COCA-FRIENDLY CANDIDATE WINS FIRST ROUND OF PERU PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION
    A former army officer turned populist and indigenist, who says he wants to legalize the coca crop, has won the first round of Peru's presidential election with a plurality. Next is the run-off vote.
  16. WEB SCAN
    Delaware's Former Top Cop Asks the Legalization Question, Cato's Radley Balko on SWAT Dog Killings
  17. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  18. JOB OPPORTUNITY
    Field Director for Students for Sensible Drug Policy, Washington, DC
  19. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #430 -- 4/7/06

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  1. EDITORIAL: STOPPING BONGS, NOT BOMBS (EVIDENTLY)
    Homeland Security personnel just can't keep from fighting drugs. Too bad for America.
  2. FEATURE: MEASURE TO MAKE DRUG CZAR RESEARCH "FRANKENSTEIN FUNGUS" TO DESTROY DRUG CROPS HEADS TO THE SENATE
    Buried within the Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization Act about to be considered by the Senate is a provision that would direct the drug czar's office -- against its own best judgment, amazingly -- to revive already-shelved research into the use of toxic fungal mycoherbicides to eradicate drug crops in places like Colombia and Afghanistan.
  3. FEATURE: PITTSBURGH NEEDLE EXCHANGE UNDER ATTACK, BUT MAY COME OUT AHEAD
    For years, volunteers with Prevention Point Pittsburgh have been provided sterile syringes to injection drug users in Allegheny County to reduce the spread of Hepatitis C and HIV. Now the program has come under attack from a city councilman. PPP hopes to turn the situation to its advantage.
  4. FEATURE: AS THE WELL RUNS DRY, TEXAS DRUG TASK FORCES RIDE OFF INTO THE SUNSET
    Out of credibility and now money, the 18-year ride of the Texas drug task forces is crawling to an end.
  5. OFFER: IMPORTANT NEW LEGALIZATION VIDEO AVAILABLE
    Get your copy of the Law Enforcement Against Prohibition video that Walter Cronkite called a "must-see for any journalist or public official dealing with [the drug] issue."
  6. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  7. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    We have two stories out of Baltimore this week, as well as a pair of greedy air marshals, an upstate New York cop with a bad habit, a Florida deputy with sticky fingers, and a Memphis cop who thought he was protecting drug dealers, but is instead going to prison.
  8. LAW ENFORCEMENT: NYPD SHUTS DOWN CHELSEA CLUBS OVER DRUG VIOLATIONS
    The New York City Police Department put a big dent in Manhattan's Chelsea club scene last Friday night as hundreds of officers swarmed into seven clubs and shut them down because of alleged drug law violations.
  9. SEARCH AND SEIZURE: COPS, SCHOOL DISTRICT TO PAY STUDENTS $1.2 MILLION IN GOOSE CREEK RAID SETTLEMENT
    Goose Creek, South Carolina, became instantly infamous 2 1/2 years ago when 14 members of the town's police force got caught on videotape terrorizing a hallway full of predominantly black students at Stratford High School in an unsuccessful search for drugs conducted at the behest of the school principal. Now taxpayers are going to pay through the nose as a result.
  10. PARAPHERNALIA: ICE RAIDS SOUTH FLORIDA HEAD SHOPS
    You would think the Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement division would be busy fighting terrorism and securing the borders, but you would be wrong. According to ICE, at least part of its mission is to keep America bong-free.
  11. PAIN MEDICINE: OHIO DOCTOR FREED ON BAIL DURING APPEAL OF DRUG TRAFFICKING CONVICTION
    Columbus physician William Nucklos, convicted on multiple drug trafficking counts for prescribing "unneeded" pain medications and sentenced to 20 years in state prison, has been granted bail and released pending appeal.
  12. PREGNANCY I: COCAINE USE IS NOT CHILD ABUSE, NEW MEXICO APPEALS COURT SAYS
    Illicit drug use while pregnant does not constitute child abuse under New Mexico state law, the state's Court of Appeals ruled Monday.
  13. PREGNANCY II: EXPECTANT MOTHERS WHO EXPOSE FETUSES TO DRUGS CAN'T BE CONVICTED AS DRUG DEALERS UNDER FETAL RIGHTS LAW, TEXAS APPEALS COURT RULES
    The Texas 7th Court of Appeals in Amarillo has overturned the drug dealing convictions of two Potter County women who admitted using illegal drugs late in their pregnancies.
  14. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: REAGAN AIDE LYN NOFZIGER DEAD AT 81 -- SUPPORTED PATIENTS' RIGHTS
    Long-time conservative consultant Lynn Nofziger died at age 81 in his Falls Church, Virginia, home March 27. Though a part of the Reagan administration who helped launch the heightened "war on drugs" in the 1980s, Nofziger later became an ardent advocate for the right to use medical marijuana.
  15. EUROPE: ITALY SETS QUANTITY GUIDELINES FOR TOUGH NEW DRUG LAW
    The Italian government has set quantity guidelines for illicit drugs that will determine whether drug offenders are subject to administrative sanctions as user "victims" or sent to prison as drug traffickers under the tough new drug law passed in February.
  16. LATIN AMERICA: PRO-COCA UPSTART POISED TO WIN FIRST ROUND OF PERUVIAN PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION
    With coca-growing one of the hottest sectors of Peru's moribund economy, an upstart former army officer who calls for the legalization of the coca crop is poised to win the first round of Peru's presidential election, set for Monday. If elected, Ollanta Humala would be the second openly pro-coca leader in the Andes, after neighboring Bolivia's Evo Morales.
  17. WEB SCAN
    WOLA at House Andes Hearings, Mycoherbicides Again, Broken Windows Debunked, CBC on Coca and Peru's Election, Denver Post, Meth Legalization
  18. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  19. JOB OPPORTUNITIES: SYSTEM ADMINISTRATOR AND GRASSROOTS ORGANIZER AT MPP
    The Marijuana Policy Project is hiring a system administrator in Washington, DC, and a grassroots organizer in Phoenix, AZ.
  20. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #429 -- 3/31/06

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  1. FEATURE: ANGEL RAICH TRIES AGAIN ON MEDICAL MARIJUANA, BUT JUDGES SOUND SKEPTICAL
    Oakland medical marijuana patient Angel Raich was back in court Monday seeking an injunction to win protection from federal law enforcers who do not recognize her right to use her medicine, but skeptical questioning from a three-judge panel at the US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals suggests she will have an uphill battle.
  2. FEATURE: DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION BACKS DOWN IN FACE OF FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT LAWSUIT SEEKING DRUG PROVISION DATA
    In the face of a lawsuit, the Department of Education has backed down from a decision to charge the nonprofit organization Students for Sensible Drug Policy thousands of dollars to provide it with information about the number of students in each state affected by the Higher Education Act's drug provision.
  3. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  4. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    We've got a Texas twofer this week, as well as a horny DEA agent, a misguided magistrate, and, yes, another prison guard trying to supplement his income the wrong way.
  5. LAW ENFORCEMENT: MISSISSIPPI SWAT TEAM INJURES ELDERLY COUPLE IN BOTCHED METHAMPHETAMINE RAID ON WRONG HOME
    A SWAT-style "Tactical Apprehension Containment Team" didn't find any meth when they battered down the door to Arthur and Lillie Bostock's Horn Lake, Mississippi, home, but they did send the two octogenarians to the hospital.
  6. MARIJUANA: CINCINNATI CITY COUNCIL VOTES TO RECRIMINALIZE
    In a giant step backward, the Cincinnati City Council voted final approval Wednesday for a city ordinance that will recriminalize marijuana possession. The move came despite no public outcry or support and in the face of unanimous opposition from witnesses in several weeks of hearings.
  7. DRUG TESTING: VIRGINIA COUNTY DRUG TESTED SEWAGE AT DRUG CZAR'S REQUEST
    At the request of the US drug czar's office, Fairfax County in northern Virginia, has embarked on a bizarre program to test its wastewater for cocaine.
  8. PAIN AND THE DRUG WAR: SENTENCE CUTS FOR MYRTLE BEACH PAIN DOCTORS
    The assault on doctors who treat chronic pain with opioids continues apace. But there is some small solace this week for a trio of South Carolina physicians who were convicted in federal court of illegally prescribing pain medications.
  9. EUROPE: BRITISH POLICE USING THERMAL IMAGING TO CATCH MARIJUANA GROWERS
    London police have become enthused about using thermal imaging cameras to detect marijuana grow-ops, and report seizing a "significant amount" of the weed in the Haringey neighborhood last week.
  10. SOUTHWEST ASIA: REP. SOUDER BERATES ADMINISTRATION AS SOFT ON AFGHAN OPIUM, CONFUSES IT WITH HEROIN, DEMANDS AERIAL ERADICATION
    Leading congressional drug warrior Mark Souder is taking the Bush administration to task for not being tough enough against the Afghanistan opium industry and criticizing the Pentagon's reluctance to embrace aerial spraying of Afghan fields with herbicides.
  11. IRAQ: OFFICIALS COMPLAIN OF RISING DRUG USE, TRAFFICKING
    Prompted by recent large drugs seizures, officials at Iraq's Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs told the UN's humanitarian news agency Monday drug trafficking and addiction are on the rise.
  12. LATIN AMERICA: US PUTS $75 MILLION BOUNTY ON COLOMBIA'S FARC LEADERS
    In a March 22 press conference, the US attorney general and DEA chief announced cocaine trafficking indictments against 50 FARC leaders and an eight-figure reward for their capture.
  13. MEDIA SCAN
    Tony Papa on Rockefeller Reform for Alternet, Ryan Grim Knocks Post on Meth Story for the City Paper
  14. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  15. PAID INTERNSHIP: UNITARIAN UNIVERSALISTS FOR DRUG POLICY REFORM/INTERFAITH DRUG POLICY INITIATIVE
    Unitarian Universalists for Drug Policy Reform (a.k.a. Interfaith Drug Policy Initiative) seeks a paid summer intern to assist in reaching out to religious leaders on issues of drug policy reform.
  16. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #428 -- 3/24/06

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  1. FEATURE: DESPITE SUPREME COURT RULING THROWING OUT FEDERAL SENTENCING GUIDELINES, FEDERAL DRUG SENTENCES KEEP GETTING LONGER
    Fourteen months ago, the US Supreme Court upset the federal sentencing apple cart with a ruling finding the sentencing guidelines unconstitutional. But a Sentencing Commission study has now found that not much has changed.
  2. FEATURE: ZOGBY POLL SAYS BOTH COASTS FAVOR LETTING STATES LEGALIZE MARIJUANA -- WHAT IS IT GOING TO TAKE?
    Advocates of ending marijuana prohibition have been wandering the desert of American politics for forty years and have yet to find the Promised Land. Now a new poll shows that in at least some parts of the country, the public is ready to say "legalize it."
  3. FEATURE: TEXAS LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS ADOPTS DRUG POLICY POSITIONS -- SUPPORTS NEEDLE EXCHANGE, MEDICAL MARIJUANA
    The Texas League of Women Voters has become the latest state chapter of the venerable civic action organization to adopt a position on drug law reform, if for now a limited one.
  4. FEEDBACK: DO YOU READ DRUG WAR CHRONICLE?
    Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.
  5. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    Cops as drug dealers, cops preying on drug dealers, cops helping drug dealers, and of course, the requisite miscreant prison guard or two.
  6. LAWSUIT: ACLU AND STUDENTS SUE FEDS OVER COLLEGE AID BAN FOR DRUG OFFENDERS
    In a lawsuit filed by the ACLU this week, students losing financial aid eligibility because of drug convictions are taking on the infamous Higher Education Act drug provision.
  7. SEARCH AND SEIZURE: SUPREME COURT REJECTS SEARCHES WHEN ONE OCCUPANT CONSENTS, BUT ANOTHER DOES NOT
    On a 5-3 vote, the US Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that police cannot enter a home and seize evidence without a warrant if one occupant refuses to consent -- even if another occupant gives permission.
  8. MARIJUANA: POLL FINDS ALASKANS JUST SAY NO TO RECRIMINALIZATION
    Alaska legislators have for two years declined to help Gov. Frank Murkowski get the state Supreme Court to undo rulings upholding the constitutional right of citizens to possess up to a quarter-pound of marijuana at home. A new poll gives them another reason to say no to Murkowski's anti-marijuana mission.
  9. SENTENCING: DRUG-FREE ZONE LAWS DON'T WORK AND RESULT IN RACIAL DISPARITIES, NEW REPORT SAYS
    Laws that create heightened penalties for drug offenses near schools, public housing, and other designated places were ostensibly designed to protect young people from drug-related activity. But they fail to do so, and non-whites are disproportionately targeted by them, according to a report by the Justice Policy Institute.
  10. FREE SPEECH: GIANT MARIJUANA LEAVES PAINTED ON HOUSE OKAY, CONNECTICUT TOWN SAYS
    A Winsted, Connecticut, resident who was busted for marijuana growing will at least get to keep a mural he painted on his home in protest.
  11. SOUTHWEST ASIA: STATE DEPARTMENT SEEKS AFGHAN OPIUM VICTORY THROUGH PUBLIC RELATIONS
    With Afghanistan's opium crop expected to increase this year despite efforts to suppress it, the US State Department has a plan to convince the American and international public the policy nevertheless works.
  12. SOUTH ASIA: INDIAN STATE GOVERNMENT SELLS CANNABIS
    Bhang, or marijuana, is commonly used in certain Hindu religious festivals, and the government of the Indian state of Punjab is now selling it wholesale.
  13. WEB SCAN
    Slate on Student Drug Testing, Stats Truths of the Drug War
  14. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  15. JOB OPENING
    Communications Assistant, Marijuana Policy Project, Washington, DC
  16. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #427 -- 3/17/06

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  1. FEATURE: THE MISUSE OF SWAT -- PARAMILITARY POLICING IN THE DRUG WAR
    In an unprecedented development in American history, SWAT teams, designed to be used only in the most intense and dangerous situations, now get deployed routinely in towns large and small for the most minor alleged crimes. The results are sometimes tragic.
  2. FEATURE: CINCINNATI MARCHING BOLDLY BACKWARD WITH NEW MARIJUANA ORDINANCE
    The Cincinnati city council is on the verge of passing an ordinance that would recriminalize marijuana possession in the conservative Ohio River city, despite the lack of any public outcry or signs of support for it.
  3. FEATURE: PORTLAND INITIATIVE WOULD MAKE MARIJUANA "LOWEST LAW ENFORCEMENT PRIORITY"
    Portland is gearing up to be the latest city to jump on the "lowest law enforcement initiative" bandwagon, through the efforts of a home-grown group, Safer Portland, which has begun a signature-gathering drive for the November ballot.
  4. HITTING THE GROUND RUNNING IN 2006 -- WITH YOUR HELP
    Amazing things (and a lot of them) have already happened at DRCNet this year, but we need your help to keep it going.
  5. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    A classic corrupt cop trial is underway in New York, two Texas Border Patrol agents are headed for prison, cops in Oklahoma and Pennsylvania get in trouble for warning drug dealers they were being watched, and a sticky-fingered Texas deputy couldn't keep his hands off the drug buy money.
  6. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: DEA, LOCAL COPS RAID ANOTHER CALIFORNIA COLLECTIVE -- ANGEL RAICH ARRESTED AT PROTEST
    DEA agents accompanied by Riverside County sheriff's deputies raided a small Palm Desert medical marijuana growing collective Tuesday -- sending the homeowner running it to the hospital.
  7. MARIJUANA: EAST BAY DEA RAIDS TAKE OUT MARIJUANA CANDY SUPPLIER
    DEA agents raided a building in the heart of Oaksterdam and locations in Emeryville and Lafayette in what they called "a sophisticated marijuana operation" involving large grows as well as the production of marijuana candy and soft drinks.
  8. FREE SPEECH: HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT'S "BONG HITS 4 JESUS" BANNER PROTECTED BY FIRST AMENDMENT, 9TH CIRCUIT SAYS
    An Alaska high school principal violated a student's constitutional right to free speech by suspending him for his "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" banner, the federal 9th Circuit has ruled.
  9. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: STEVE KUBBY BACK IN JAIL FOR 60 DAYS -- OR LESS
    California medical marijuana activist Steve Kubby is back behind bars, but there is a not so distant light at the end of the tunnel.
  10. LATIN AMERICA: ARGENTINE APPEALS COURT THROWS OUT MEDICAL MARIJUANA CONVICTION
    An Argentine federal court has thrown out the marijuana possession conviction of a Buenos Aires woman who argued that she was using it medically, and has ordered the sentencing judge to reconsider the case based on privacy law and the medical issues.
  11. SOUTHWEST ASIA: AFGHANISTAN TO ENCOURAGE OPIUM LORDS TO INVEST AT HOME, OFFICIAL SAYS
    The Afghan government of President Hamid Karzai will attempt to integrate profits from the opium trade into the legitimate national economy, the governor of the country's leading opium growing province said this week.
  12. MIDDLE EAST: ISRAELI GREEN LEAF (MARIJUANA) PARTY COULD WIN KNESSET SEATS
    Two years ago, Israel's Ale Yarok (Green Leaf, referring to marijuana) Party came within 7,000 votes of winning a seat in the Knesset. Now some pollsters think this is the year Ale Yarok could go over the top.
  13. WEB SCAN
    BBC, Newsday Rockefeller Editorial, A Drug War Prisoner on the Net
  14. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  15. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #426 -- 3/10/06

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  1. FEATURE: FIVE YEARS ON, CALIFORNIA'S PROPOSITION 36 CLAIMS SUCCESS, BUT FACES NEW STRUGGLES
    More than 140,000 people arrested for drug possession have received treatment instead of incarceration and 60,000 have successfully completed treatment since California voters passed Prop. 36 five years ago. Now the end of voter-mandated funding means new struggles over the measure's cost -- and its spirit.
  2. FEATURE: PILOT METHADONE MAINTENANCE PROGRAM FOR JAIL INMATES OFF TO GOOD START, NEW MEXICO OFFICIALS SAY
    In the only project of its sort in the southwestern US, a select group of inmates in the Bernalillo County's Metropolitan Correctional Center in Albuquerque have been receiving maintenance doses of methadone as a treatment for heroin addiction for the last three months.
  3. WEB SITE: A FRIENDLY REMINDER ABOUT THE DRUG WAR CHRONICLE ARCHIVES PAGE -- NEW MARIJUANA-ONLY ARCHIVES NOW AVAILABLE TOO
    The Chronicle archives now boast over 5,600 articles, more than 1,000 on marijuana news alone.
  4. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    Cops as gangsters, DEA agents as thieving real estate speculators, a Texas police chief who never let any drug evidence get away, cops in Miami and Chicago planting drugs, evidence gone missing in East St. Louis, and a greedy prison guard, this time in Georgia.
  5. METHAMPHETAMINE: FEDERAL BILL PASSES AS PART OF USA PATRIOT ACT
    The Patriot Act is ostensibly designed to protect Americans from the foreign terrorist threat, but its most immediate impact will be to protect Americans from Sudafed.
  6. METHAMPHETAMINE: SAMHSA RELEASE MISLEADS ON TREATMENT NUMBERS, PRESS BITES
    A press release by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration screamed out that the number of people in treatment for methamphetamine had increased dramatically between 1993 and 2003. But it didn't mention that a significant factor in the increase was heightened attention to the drug by the criminal justice system and resulting compulsory referrals.
  7. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: STEVE KUBBY FREED FROM JAIL -- LOST 25 POUNDS IN SIX WEEKS
    Forty days into a 120-day sentence, former medical marijuana refugee Steve Kubby has been released early for good behavior, and is free at least for now.
  8. CANADA: ANOTHER WEEK, ANOTHER ATTACK ON THE CANNABIS INDUSTRY
    The Conservative government of Prime Minister Steven Harper has only been in office for a few weeks, but it is already sending strong signals that cannabis and cannabis-related businesses will be the subjects of unwanted government attention.
  9. EUROPE: EDINBURGH "DRUG CZAR" SAYS TIME TO CONSIDER PRESCRIBING HEROIN
    The debate over heroin has turned lively in Scotland this week, with Edinburgh's "drug czar" urging the Scottish Executive to consider prescribe heroin to addicts through the National Health Service.
  10. AFRICA: MOROCCO'S CAMPAIGN AGAINST HASHISH GROWING HAS PEASANTS GRUMBLING, PROTESTING
    The Moroccan government has won international praise for its campaign against marijuana cultivation in the country's Rif region. But last week about 3,000 people demonstrated near the village of Boujdiane to demand the government help them replace lost incomes.
  11. SOUTHWEST ASIA: AFGHAN OPIUM CROP TO EXPAND THIS YEAR, UN SAYS
    Afghan farmers are planting more opium poppies this year than last year, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime reported Monday.
  12. THE DEBATE: REFORMERS AND A PROHIBITIONIST RESPOND TO FAVORABLE WALL STREET JOURNAL EDITORIAL
    Two LEAP cops and a libertarian say yes to WSJ legalization column on the editorial page -- former drug czar mouthpiece says no.
  13. MEDIA SCAN
    Reformers and UN Drug Chief Debate on the BBC This Weekend
  14. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  15. JOB OPENING
    Communications Assistant, Drug Policy Alliance, New York
  16. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #425 -- 3/3/06

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  1. EDITORIAL: A BASIC QUESTION OF FAIRNESS
    Other countries like Canada seem to have greener pastures when it comes to drug policy reform. But inside those countries it's still a relative matter.
  2. FEATURE: CANADA CANNABIS SEED CRACKDOWN?
    Canadian marijuana entrepreneurs -- and their customers -- are worried after the Mounties busted what was arguably Canada's largest seed seller.
  3. FEATURE: IN ANNUAL RITUAL, BUSH ADMINISTRATION SEEKS MORE AID FOR COLOMBIA DRUG WAR
    Bill Clinton's five-year Plan Colombia is now in its seventh year, albeit under a different name, but has failed to make a significant dent in the flow of cocaine from Colombia, and human rights abuses persist. Still, all expectations are that the annual Washington ritual of Colombia drug war funding will end with little changing.
  4. CELEBRITY MOUTH: FOX BLOVIATOR ATTACKS TV NEWS LEGEND WALTER CRONKITE OVER DRUG WAR
    Walter Cronkite, the legendary CBS news anchor widely dubbed "the most trusted man in America," has joined the legions of those who have earned the scorn of Fox News television host and commentator Bill O'Reilly -- and it's all about drugs.
  5. FEATURE: THE PUSH IS ON AGAIN IN NEVADA
    In a campaign that officially kicked off last month, organizers are continuing a five-year effort to enshrine the regulation and control of marijuana into state law.
  6. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    An Alabama prosecutor's investigator gets involved in a shootout with police over 40 pounds of cocaine, a Border Patrol agent pays for winking a truck-load of dope, two more Border Patrol agents are on trial for shooting a fleeing suspected drug courier, and a New Jersey cop's bad habit gets him in trouble.
  7. MARIJUANA: TWO STEPS FORWARD, ONE STEP BACK AS LAWRENCE, KANSAS, ADJUSTS ITS MARIJUANA LAWS
    An new ordinance in the college town will protect students busted for first-time marijuana possession from losing their federal financial aid. But the city took the opportunity to hike fines.
  8. MARIJUANA: UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS, FLORIDA STATE STUDENTS PASS SAFER-STYLE RESOLUTIONS
    The "Safe Alternatives for Enjoyable Recreation" is rolling along with most campus victories.
  9. HIGH SCHOOLS: SOUTH DAKOTA LEGISLATURE OVERRIDES VETO TO LESSEN STUDENT DRUG PENALTIES
    The South Dakota legislature last week overrode a veto by Gov. Michael Rounds and enacted a law that will shorten a ban on extracurricular activities by students caught using drugs.
  10. DRUG-FREE ZONES: CALIFORNIA HOMELESS LEGISLATION WOULD BAR CERTAIN DRUG OFFENDERS FROM LA'S SKID ROW
    A package of homelessness bills in California includes legislation that would create a zone in the heart of Los Angeles' Skid Row where people on probation for drug sales would be banned -- except to attend drug treatment programs.
  11. EUROPE: SCOTTISH TORIES TIP-TOE TOWARD LIBERTARIAN LINE ON DRUG POLICY
    A chapter in a new book by top Scottish conservatives suggests letting individuals, not the state, make their own choices.
  12. SOUTH ASIA: IN KATMANDU, HINDU HOLY MEN SMOKE MARIJUANA IN ANNUAL SHIVA FESTIVAL
    Hindu holy men, devotees, and tourists by the hundreds, if not thousands, smoked marijuana this weekend outside a temple in Nepal to honor Shiva the Destroyer, the Hindu god of change and goodness.
  13. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  14. JOB OPPORTUNITY: RELIGIOUS OUTREACH COORDINATOR, INTERFAITH DRUG POLICY INITIATIVE
    The Interfaith Drug Policy Initiative is seeking an experienced community organizer who is a dynamic person of faith to build support among the religious community for taxing and regulating marijuana.
  15. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #424 -- 2/24/06

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  1. FEATURE: THE OLYMPICS MEETS THE WAR ON DRUGS
    Competition at the Olympic Games was overshadowed by a dramatic escalation of the war on drugs by Italian police, who raided Austria's biathlon and cross-country skiing teams late the night before they were set to compete.
  2. FEATURE: MARYLAND DELEGATE INTRODUCES BILL TO EASE STATE AID FOR STUDENTS AFFECTED BY FEDERAL DRUG PROVISION
    A bill in the Maryland legislature would help students who lost federal financial aid for college because of drug convictions to obtain financial assistance through state programs.
  3. FEATURE: FROM THE EAST BAY, THE CANNABIS CULTURE SPEAKS
    Along with cannabis dispensaries, patient support services providers and a gift shop, Oakland's 10-year old "Oaksterdam" enterprise now has a newspaper too.
  4. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    It's two for Texas, two for Tennessee in this week's rogues' gallery, but also cops gone bad from Pennsylvania and Maryland, South Carolina and Florida.
  5. AYAHUASCA: SUPREME COURT OKAYS USE OF PSYCHEDELIC TEA IN CHURCH RITUALS
    A unanimous US Supreme Court ruled Monday that the US branch of a Brazilian church may use a psychedelic tea containing a controlled substance as part of its religious rituals.
  6. PROHIBITION: THE WALL STREET JOURNAL WAVERS
    The Wall Street Journal's editorial page has an impregnable reputation as a bastion of conservative thought and a long history of support for drug prohibition. But something is going on at the nation's second most widely read newspaper.
  7. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: ILLINOIS BILL MOVING, PASSES SENATE COMMITTEE
    A bill that would allow seriously ill patients to use marijuana squeaked by a state Senate subcommittee with a one-vote margin last week and is now heading for a Senate floor vote.
  8. MEDICAL MARIJUANA: NEW MEXICO BILL DIES IN HOUSE AS TIME RUNS OUT
    For the second year in a row, an effort to push a medical marijuana bill through the New Mexico legislature has won passage in the state Senate only to stall in the House.
  9. SOUTHEAST ASIA: DRUG WAR SUCCESS MEANS POVERTY FOR LAOTIAN FARMERS
    A program to eradicate opium farming in Laos has been so "successful" that farmers there are now in dire need of economic assistance.
  10. CANADA: BRITISH COLUMBIA'S NEW DEMOCRATS SAY LEGALIZE IT
    The leading opposition party in the western Canadian province has officially called for legalization of marijuana.
  11. SEARCH AND SEIZURE: FLORIDA APPEALS COURT RESTRICTS WARRANTLESS DRUG DOG SEARCHES
    The Florida 4th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that police must obtain a warrant before drug-sniffing dogs are allowed to search private property.
  12. CELEBRITY MOUTH: BRUCE WILLIS DECLARES WAR ON COCAINE
    In what is presumably a bid to gin up publicity for his new movie, 16 Blocks, movie tough-guy Bruce Willis is talking tough about cocaine.
  13. WEB SCAN
    Cannabinoids for Cancer Treatment, Perjury in Police Misconduct
  14. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  15. JOB OPPORTUNITY: COMMUNITY LIAISON, PREVENTIONWORKS!, WASHINGTON, DC
    The capital city's syringe exchange/harm reduction program is hiring a Community Liaison.
  16. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's listings for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

Issue #423 -- 2/16/06

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  1. FEATURE: NEW MEXICO MEDICAL MARIJUANA BILL LIKELY TO DIE WITHOUT A FLOOR VOTE BARRING LAST-DITCH EFFORT
    The New Mexico legislature's 2006 short session ends at noon Mountain Time today, and barring a last-second, long-shot maneuver, the medical marijuana bill supported by the state's governor will go with it.
  2. FEATURE: DRUG POSSESSION FOR PERSONAL USE IS NOT A CRIME, ARGENTINE COURT RULES
    In a decision that could go before the nation's Supreme Court, a judge in Argentina's Buenos Aires province has found a penalizing drug possession unconstitutional.
  3. FEATURE: FOES FUME AND FLEE AS DRUG REFORM REACHES OUT TO CONSERVATIVES
    For the second year in a row, drug reformers took the message to a seemingly unlikely audience -- the annual Conservative Political Action Conference.
  4. LAW ENFORCEMENT: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORIES
    It's a bumper crop of bad cops this week, with strange goings on in two Arkansas towns, cops up to no good across the South and in Massachusetts and Washington state, a prosecutor in trouble in San Francisco, and a pair of federal air marshals who were apparently marshaling white powder safely to its destination. And we give a shout-out to a web site that you'll like if you like this feature.
  5. FEDERAL DRUG BUDGET: DEMOCRATIC SENATORS URGE RESTORING FUNDS FOR DRUG TASK FORCES
    In an attempt at using tough-on-crime rhetoric to win partisan political advantage, a number of Democratic senators are criticizing the Bush administration for seeking further cuts in drug war spending programs beloved by law enforcement.
  6. MARIJUANA: DECRIMINALIZATION MEASURE MOVING IN MASSACHUSETTS
    In the first of many steps, a bill that would impose fines -- not jail time -- for marijuana possession in Massachusetts has been approved by a legislative committee.
  7. MARIJUANA: OAKLAND-STYLE "MEASURE Z" CAMPAIGNS SLATED FOR MORE CALIFORNIA CITIES
    People involved in Oakland's groundbreaking 2004 initiative -- which made private, adult marijuana transactions the city's lowest law enforcement priority -- are set to expand the effort to other California cities.
  8. ECSTASY: AFTER THE FACT, WISCONSIN LEGISLATOR SEEKS TO STIFFEN PENALTIES
    The Ecstasy curve appears to be past its peak, according to standard measures. But that hasn't stopped a Wisconsin legislator from taking action now.
  9. EUROPE: BELGIAN SOCIALISTS CALL FOR REGULATED MARIJUANA SALES
    A junior partner in Belgium's governing coalition is calling for the country's three-year-old marijuana decriminalization experiment to be extended to outright legalization.
  10. WEB SCAN
    Sentencing Project on the War on Marijuana, Marsha Rosenbaum on Drug Hysteria for Alternet
  11. WEEKLY: THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
    Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
  12. WEEKLY: THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

(top)

[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

(top)

[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

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[an error occurred while processing this directive]

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